Saturday, March 17, 2007
Part I Warning signs
Late last Summer my Mom and I, along with the kids, traveled to Port Arthur/Beaumont to visit my grandparents. Just a year earlier the area had been tragically hit by hurricane Rita. Thankfully my grandparents home did not suffer much damage but my great-aunt and uncle's home was close to being totally destroyed. As we drove into Beaumont, I noticed an electronic/computerized sign by one of the highway exits. It quickly caught my attention.




In Dallas, where I live, we do not suffer the effects of a Hurricane. Maybe some strong thunderstorms and a little high wind but nothing like those living near the coast. After seeing the sign off the highway, I got to thinking about the people that live in those towns and surrounding areas. Come September of every year, I think I would be a little nervous. After what happened almost two years ago, my awareness of hurricanes has definitely heightened. While I never personally saw the effects of Hurricane Katrina, I did come face to face with the aftermath of Hurricane Rita. Even after a year, Port Arthur and Beaumont continued to suffer. My husband and I also traveled to Cozumel, Mexico for a vacation and what Rita did there was unbelievable. Cozumel was so ravaged that it did not even look the same from when we went two years earlier. Because of the recent, horrific hurricanes, anyone that lives in an area where a hurricane may have the slightest chance of hitting, the people are warned and they prepare for the worst.

The warning sign off the highway, was clearly used by the Lord to later speak to me about my own life and hearing His voice. Growing up in church, I have been taught to heed the voice of the Lord. I have been taught and I have also learned for myself that often the Holy Spirit will put a check in my spirit or a feeling in my gut to warn me about a relationship, situation or anything else that may bring pain or danger to my life or my family's. Just yesterday I had a thought come to my head. "Ava Beth-Bunk bed." I thought of Josiah's bunk beds and how she copies everything her big brother does and how it could be dangerous for her to climb up to the top. I got up, hurried to his room and found them BOTH on the top of his bunk bed. She's two years old, skinny, dainty and petite. A fall from the bunk bed would not be good. Josiah broke his leg when he was two years old after falling out of a swing. Therefore, I am more aware of how fragile their bones are when so young. The thought of the bunk bed and Ava Beth on top was 100% without a doubt, the Holy Spirit. It's usually our first thought, that's what I know to be true for me. So I pay attention, close attention. When the Lord gives me discernment, I follow through.

The warning signs are important. I have met people in my life and instantly felt something inside of me that says, "BE CAREFUL." Sometimes I have heeded the warning, sometimes not. I have also sat back and watched others make choices that I knew could be dangerous or detrimental to their life. Unfortunately, you can't always go to a friend or a loved one and say, "BE CAREFUL, this person you are involved with is not good for you, you could be hurt. You may not see it now, but you will find out later." Sometimes I feel things very deeply, so much that I can almost see it happening. I know it may sound weird to some, but I know that I have a very strong gift of discernment. The Lord did not give me that gift to abuse. He gave me that gift to be an intercessor and stand in the gap for people that I love.

I truly believe that we can walk so closely to the Lord that we KNOW when something isn't right. If we are walking in the spirit, we know when someone is lying to us. Call me crazy but I know when someone is lying to me, IF I am walking in the spirit. We can also know when someone is trying to hurt us and/or know when someone is hurting and needs prayer. Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night with someone on your heart? Have you ever had someone on your mind for days and don't know why? Or what about dreams? I have actually had dreams about people, nothing bad necessarily, and woke up with a strong urge to pray for them. Only to find out later, they needed prayer at that moment.

I have learned and I am still learning that if I walk in the spirit (meaning-stay in the word, stay in prayer, keeping my mind fixed on HIM), He truly will direct my paths and speak to me. This past week I had someone very close to me on my mind. She is a precious friend and I love her dearly. I have not been able to get her out of my mind. I called her and she was hurting. She needed some encouragement. She needed some love poured all over her by a friend that cared.

It's so important to pay attention to those things. And it can be done without living in fear. Just because you have a thought come to your mind, it does not mean DANGER is coming. Sometimes you have to pray about it before taking action. The longer and longer we walk beside HIM, I believe we learn when and how to take action. I KNEW I was supposed to run into Josiah's room to check and see if Ava Beth was on the bunk bed. I have also known when people come into the church that may bring pain to the Pastor or to the congregation. It's not my job to go and reveal my feelings or thoughts. I have to pray about them first and pray for protection. When I do that, I have often watched them figure it out for themselves. Or sometimes I haven't prayed and watched it unfold badly.

Hearing the voice of God or having discernment is not a special power. It's a gift. It's a gift we should all seek. Often we make hearing His voice too difficult. We confuse our own with His or we mistake a good thing for a God thing. And just because it's a good thing does not mean it's a God thing! Hearing His voice does not have to be as difficult as we make it. We know that the enemy is not going to send thoughts that would bring protection, comfort, encouragement or ANYTHING that is pure and true. We also know that GOD will not send us thoughts of fear, worry, or anything that is not pure and true.

It's like my Mom always says, "Listen to your GUT Mandi! Always listen to your gut!"


  posted at 9:24 AM

At 12:17 PM, Blogger Kelly said...

This is powerful- I love the way God is always speaking to us, but as you say, we have to be walking in the spirit to hear Him. It thrills me that He has a message for us at all times, and that all we need to do is tune in to Him to hear it... and it makes me sad that I am so often caught up in the busy- ness and forget to listen.

Praise God that you checked on the kids when you felt that prompting!


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